Early December 2022, officials in Region Västra Götaland, Sweden, decided to extend the Everdrone First on Scene Solutions™ project of drones as first responders throughout 2023.
An important step towards a permanent establishment of the drone-delivered AED units to the entire region, but also an opportunity to keep gathering insights in collaboration with the largest regional healthcare provider in Sweden.
Since the start of the collaboration between Region Västra Götaland and Everdrone in June 2020, the project has been conducting live operations which have delivered valuable results and made a positive impact on the Region’s emergency response efforts. The use of drones to promptly deliver defibrillators has proven to be significantly faster than traditional ambulance first responder assistance. The successful outcome of the ongoing project has prompted Region Västra Götaland to extend the collaboration for the entirety of 2023.
The decision to extend is the next substantial step towards integrating drone deliveries of AED (automated external defibrillators) into the Region’s life-saving chain on a permanent basis, something that has been the overall ambition for both Region Västra Götaland and Everdrone.
“This is extremely positive news for everyone involved in the project”, says Magnus Kristiansson, Innovation Platform Manager within Region Västra Götaland. “This gives us valuable time to keep adding to our growing knowledge database, to get more insights and keep on learning more on how we can use the technology and the whole system for the benefit of the Region’s inhabitants.”
Region Västra Götaland and Everdrone are currently exploring ways to expand the use of Everdrone’s technology and drones, such as using them to transmit live-view imagery of accident sites. Everdrone’s LiveView™ application has been specially developed to provide emergency services with vital and time-sensitive information for making quick decisions before first responders arrive at the scene.
“I see the decision to extend our cooperation with Region Västra Götaland as proof of the value-adding benefits of our service”, says Everdrone CEO Mats Sällström. “Still, the possibilities left to explore are numerous. Presently, we’re among the world’s leading companies when it comes to the combination of drone technology and regulatory know-how, but we’re still just getting started. Everdrone will always be in a state of innovation – there’s nothing so good that it can’t be perfected further.”
The cooperation between the Region and Everdrone has gone through a number of phases. Initially, Region Västra Götaland supported the project through a dedicated innovation fund, but since the summer of 2022, financing has come directly from the Region, making the cooperation even stronger.
“Our work together has been thoroughly rewarding”, says Magnus Kristiansson. “And now, we can develop the functionalities even more. System innovation, increased know-how on air space regulations … there’s always more to learn, but I’m hopeful that the AED deliveries – as well as additional benefits from drone deliveries – can be implemented on a more permanent basis as long as we keep on exploring, learning and working together.”
Mats Sällström concurs and underlines the need to keep on gathering insights and looking ahead.
“We are proud of this decision, but we are not stopping there. We are committed to expanding the capabilities of our drones and improving our services. Our current fastest delivery time is 2 minutes and 27 seconds, and we aim to improve it further by reducing flight time by up to 60 seconds in the coming year. This is just the beginning.”